Finding Health Insurance Companies to Deal With

With the many different health insurance companies that operate in this country, how do you go about choosing the best one for your needs?

All you have to do to find a list of the companies is to do a simple search online to find the names of hundreds of such companies that are waiting to sell you a health insurance policy. Some of the names may be immediately recognizable for you because they are national companies, such as Blue Cross, Blue Shield the American National Insurance Company and American Family Insurance.

Before choosing any one of the many health insurance companies, you do have to compare the various health plans each one offers. Some may be better for your health needs than others with affordable premiums.

For example, some of the health insurance plans will limit you to specific doctors or hospitals while others will let you choose the health care practitioner and facility of your choice. Even though most health plans include vision and dental care, if you have young children you may want to have a policy that includes coverage for braces and retainers. This will limit the list of health insurance providers from whom you can purchase a policy.

Another factor that you need to look at as you compare health insurance companies and policies is how payment is made for the services you receive. Many policies now have direct billing, which means you pay only a portion of the cost when you receive the service and the bill for the rest of the cost goes to the insurance company. In other health plans you have to pay the full cost and then submit a claim for reimbursement.

Check out the credit rating of the various health insurance providers that offer plans that seem agreeable to you. In this current economic climate, it is important to make sure that the company is solvent and will not have to declare bankruptcy leaving you without the benefit of health insurance.

Standard and Poor’s, Moody’s, and the A.M. Best Company rate health insurance companies according to letter grades. An A+ rating is the best, so when you do check if the company has such a rating or even AAA, this is a good company to do business with.

Some of the health insurance companies operate in all states of the country. This would be a good factor to help you find the best health plan because companies with such a large scope no doubt have a wide range of plans for you to choose from. You may also be very surprised to find that some of the smaller companies are subsidiaries of larger companies and therefore will share in the ratings and the types of plans available.

At the same time, there are many well known private health insurance companies that operate in only one state. You can search through the list to find a company associated with your state. This is very beneficial because the staff would be knowledgeable about the intricacies of health care in your region and would be in a better position to help answer your specific questions.

There may even be health plans available for your individual situations. In some cases, if you are having difficulty finding a doctor or a hospital having a plan from one of these companies will help you in this regard.

Knowing Your Life Insurance Companies

When you are looking to purchase life insurance, it is not as easy as buying a car insurance. You need to know the different types of insuring yourself and of the reliability of the life insurance companies. There are literally thousands of life insurance companies so it is not fair to name some or few that we can say reliable. Reliability of the insurer is always a must when deciding where to buy insurance.

Some of these companies offer the most outstanding and reliable products because of their affordability and quality. But do not be fooled by the affordability of their product, just make sure you can rely on them for the long haul. What is the use of getting cheap and affordable way of being insured if they are no longer there when you need them?

But before you decide on which insurer you going to have, the first thing you should do is to decide on what type of life insurance you are going to take out. Ask yourself what you want. Do you want a term life, a whole life or a universal life insurance? A term life is for temporary coverage and for specified period of time only. A whole life will cover you for life and plus it has an investment component attached to it. Once you have decided on what type you getting yourself insured, then start looking for the life insurance companies who offer them.

The next thing you should do is make a list of the companies you are interested in. Then try and solicit any advice as the reliability of each of those that you choose. Ask your friends and family members if anybody knew anything about any of those on your lists. This one way of finding if the insurers have good business practices and true to their commitments. See if anyone has any good or bad experiences with any of those on your lists.

It will be a very good idea to contact your federal or state insurance department if these companies are licensed to sell life insurance in your state. The most reliable companies are those that are authorized and licensed to sell them in your state. You do this primarily to ensure that if something wrong happens, your state’s insurance department can help you. Being licensed in your state is very important for you to know in order to avoid any problems later.

Another thing you have to look for is the ratings given to these companies. There are independent research companies who rates these insurers and some can be reach online. If you cannot find them online, you contact them these research companies directly.

Knowing what type of life insurance, they are licensed to do business in your state, with high financial rating and with good business practices mean reliable life insurance companies. Just make sure you have done your home work. This way you have the sense of security and peace of mind.

Where to Get Homeowners Insurance Company Rankings

Homeowners insurance company rankings can tell you a lot about insurance companies. Here’s where to find insurance company rankings that will help you determine which company is best for your homeowners insurance needs.

Consumer Rankings

The best place I’ve found to get homeowners insurance consumer rankings is at J.D. Power & Associates. They are an independent information company that conducts customer surveys and provides unbiased customer reviews and ratings on a variety of products and services.

J.D. Power ranks insurance companies based on their policy prices, policy options, claims handling, and customer service. Their ratings go from five circles (the best companies) to two circles (the worst). I recommend purchasing your homeowners insurance with a company that has a rating of three circles or higher.

Insurance Department Rankings

Every state has a department of insurance that oversees insurance companies, and most states have a website that provides insurance statistics. One of the most useful statistics they provide is a list of complaints made against insurance companies by their customers. These complaints are a good way to find out how reliable a company is, and how it treats its customers.

If your state insurance department doesn’t list insurance company complaints, you can get this information at the California Department of Insurance website (http://www.insurance.ca.gov/).

All major companies have had complaints filed against them, so I recommend going with a company that has a lower than average number of complaints.

Financial Rankings

Financial rankings are a good way to determine an insurance company’s ability to pay its claims. A.M. Best (ambest.com) rates insurance companies based on their financial strength. A high rating means a company has enough financial assets to pay it’s claims.

A.M. Best rates companies from A++ (their highest rating) to D (their lowest). I recommend purchasing insurance through a company with a B+ rating or higher.

Getting Low Cost Insurance With A-Rated Companies

The best place to get low cost homeowners insurance is at an insurance comparison website. Some of these sites provide an online chat service so you can get answers to your homeowners insurance questions from an insurance expert, and get help in lowering your insurance cost. (see link below).